Looking for a colour to paint your bedroom or brand your website? Consider “period red,” a new colour designed by Pantone (the international standard for colour matching), intended to give us new resources to talk openly about menstruation.
The new shade is described as “an active and adventurous red hue” that it hoped would “embolden people who menstruate to feel proud of who they are”. Note the inclusive language pantone uses, acknowledging that there are people of all genders who menstruate.
The campaign is also aimed at raising support and awareness for global initiatives to reduce the stigma associated with menstruation, especially in countries where girls and young women can’t go to school because they can’t afford or access pads. School is a fundamental part of empowerment and escape from poverty for vulnerable young women.
I shared a post about two months ago about a similar initiative in Uganda, started by a young woman who has just graduated from a project I’ve co-led for the past 15 years. Read about in in Britah’s words.
Since that post, Britah has led several workshops with groups of girls, teaching them how to make reusable pads, and teaching them how to teach others the skill. As part of the workshops, she engages the girls in developing goals, confidence and ideas about their futures.
Britah’s amazing, and she’s inspiring girls across Uganda. Right now, this is a fully volunteer project, but each workshop costs about $75 for transport, food and supplies. To support Britah’s project, you can make a donation via this link — there is a dropdown link that specifies Kusiima Girls Foundation. Every cent will go to her, and Canadians will get a tax receipt.
And in the spirit of this adventurous bold colour and destigmatizing menstruation, tell a story about your period in the comments.
Fieldpoppy is Cate Creede, who lives and still — still! — menstruates in Toronto.